Raise your hand if you remember the days of playing Diablo II or Warcraft III on the service then often referred to as B.net. Now raise your hand higher in salute, as Blizzard announced this afternoon it’s retiring the Battle.net name, though not the service itself.
“We’re going to be transitioning away from using the Battle.net name for our gaming service and the functionality connected to it,” the studio told fans today. “Battle.net technology will continue to serve as the central nervous system for Blizzard games—nothing is changing in that regard. We’ll just be referring to it as Blizzard tech instead. You’ve already seen this recently with things like ‘Blizzard Streaming’ and ‘Blizzard Voice,’ and more changes are on the way.
So what’s behind the move?
“When we created Battle.net, the idea of including a tailored online-gaming service together with your game was more of a novel concept, so we put a lot of focus on explaining what the service was and how it worked, including giving it a distinct name. Over time, though, we’ve seen that there’s been occasional confusion and inefficiencies related to having two separate identities under which everything falls—Blizzard and Battle.net. Given that built-in multiplayer support is a well-understood concept and more of a normal expectation these days, there isn’t as much of a need to maintain a separate identity for what is essentially our networking technology.”